WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Pci Compliance
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They were one of the (if not the) very first business to provide handled hosting services particularly for WordPress. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
While they have lots of competition in both the general hosting and handled WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the marketplace leader in lots of methods -and they have broad name recognition and cutting-edge features.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and website home builders, the hosting market has ended up being a super-confusing location.
I wrote a whole post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. But here’s the brief version: They all differ in services supplied. Some merely have WordPress-trained tech support. Some deal services such as server-side features and staging for WordPress.
And after that there’s a different level of handled WordPress Hosting where you are not really buying hosting per se, but rather services to keep your WordPress install live. Basically, a Managed WordPress Hosting service uses a menu of services customized to WordPress at a higher rate point, so that the website owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the website content + functionality.
Every rival in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a various offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of options, however as an entire, they all take on conventional shared Linux hosting offerings and tailored WordPress hosting alternatives.
In any case, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s confusing, yes, but it is essential to understand prior to making apples to oranges contrasts.
There are a great deal of WP Engine examines online, usually with user-generated reviews based upon anecdotes and personal experience. That’s fine but I take a different method. This review will take a look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all webhosting alternatives to see who it is a “finest fit” for. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
I have actually used WP Engine for various jobs because 2012. I do not use them for my primary sites right now (see conclusion), however I do have a current client on WP Engine who definitely enjoys them. Here’s my WP Engine review structured as benefits and drawbacks.
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from any business discussed. All data & opinion is based upon my experience as a paying customer or specialist to a paying customer.
Pros of WP Engine
To start, WP Engine does pretty much live up to its pitch on its homepage where they promise “stunning speed, powerful security, and best-in-class customer service.” Here is their promotion pitch video:
They primarily target websites that are moving from other hosting companies (ie, customers dissatisfied with current hosting).
Here are some of the big advantages that I’ve seen as a customer & consultant to a customer. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that enter into website speed, but the guideline is that the more complex your site is, the more intricate the options to speed become.
From package, WordPress is relatively lean and fast. If you are running a primarily text website with a couple of standard plugins and a few small images, you’ll be great with an inexpensive shared hosting plan from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
But couple of website owners keep their WordPress set up lean. There’s generally additional plugins, custom style files, great deals of images, widgets, ads, kinds and more.
All these features integrated with good levels of traffic can begin to decrease your WordPress set up.
But a sluggish website doesn’t imply that you need a larger, better server. It does indicate that you need to get smarter about speed. Often it’s as easy as getting a more powerful server, but often it’s more about caching particular resources in a specific order and enhancing your files. Simply puts, it gets complex.
Picture you are aiming to transport a trailer with a pickup truck. Envision your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s meaningless to keep complaining that your truck is not huge enough when you might simply need to remove the emergency brake, set up a turbocharger, revitalize the transmission fluid and consolidate your load.
The point is that WordPress requires assistance to stay fast as you grow. There are plenty of solutions … but either you or a designer need to execute them.
That’s where handled WordPress hosting can be found in. WP Engine looks after (almost) all speed issues. They have actually tailored servers with extremely aggressive caching and even advanced “stack” than a typical webhosting. They likewise have actually trained support who will go into your WordPress set up and determine the specific chokepoint to get your website moving. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
They don’t even permit caching plugins on their installs because they have such a customized caching setup.
The fascinating thing is that even unoptimized WordPress installs still succeed on their platform due to the fact that their platform does the extra work.
Here’s the speed test for one of my customers on WP Engine (who has a bloated style, extra scripts, a lot of uncompressed images, to name a few things):
Keep in mind the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That measures how quickly the server returned enough information to begin packing the page.
It’s nice to have that sort of speed right from the box, and have it stay that method no matter how huge or complex the website gets.
*Keep in mind that the other point here is that if you are consumed about speed, you can get back at much better numbers with WP Engine than you might get with other services because you are totally free to concentrate on speed aspects that you can easily manage like image compression, use of scripts, etc.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just supplies an integrated CDN, however they also offer worldwide information centers in case your audience is primarily in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Pci Compliance
Customer support has actually been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch because they wased established. After all, they are really offering more of a service (ie, handled hosting) than a product (ie, hosting). It makes sense for them to position a big focus on support.
Here’s a screenshot from among my very first contacts with support back in 2012:
Take a look at the response|reaction|action} time, that wasn’t an autoresponder either.
Now, the business has grown & changed a lot ever since. They went through a stretch where they were getting a lot of criticism about over-promising on support.
That stated, the hard aspect of customer support is that a lot of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, however you never know if the story is because they spoke to the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I point out in every hosting evaluation, the fundamental part is to see if a business treats support as a financial investment or an expense.
I prefer to try to find access, systems, and knowledge, all 3 need an investment of cash, time and expertise.
Based on my recent interactions and research, they are doing much better striking all 3 boxes. They preserve a range of support channels (including phone for non-Basic strategies). They have a fast, trackable ticketing system and are available everywhere on the website through chat.
Based on their guide videos and substantial knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my client has actually engaged with actually knew the great functions of WordPress and has actually had the ability to problem-solve on the fly.
The most impressive (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call in between my customer, myself and WP Engine throughout my client’s shift to HTTPS/ SSL. The associate was not just able to obtain on (and stay on) the phone, however he was able to expertly help us “turn the switch” quickly in addition to looking after several issues (ie, submitting a non-HTTP sitemap and repairing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
I’m sure that WP Engine still has support problems,specifically since their custom-made platform puts a great deal of pressure on fast, accessible support (as I’ll show in the drawbacks). However they seem to understand that support is core to their worth and do make the required financial investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the whole Internet. That suggests that it is a prime target for hackers & malware suppliers.
But there is nothing naturally insecure about WordPress that is not a problem with all software application. WordPress has the upside of being open-source with a huge neighborhood releasing updates & testing vulnerabilities.
If you run your own WordPress install, the security essentials are fairly simple:
- Keep your install & all your plugins updated
- Only install files from reputable creators
- Run a security plugin to lock down the most common brute force attacks
- Keep a backup for when things go wrong
* Aside, I utilize JetPack for the last two. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the commercial arm of WordPress.
You’ll see that even though security on WordPress is simple, the obligation is still on you to keep things secure. Much like having a deadbolt does nothing if you don’t lock it, keeping your site safe and secure is still eventually on you.
And like speed & performance, WP Engine generally takes all those best practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep everything off-site & prepared to roll back if something occurs. Given that you technically have an “set up” on their server (instead of an account), they tackle a lot of security problems globally on the server level.
WP Engine also works carefully with leading security companies on code evaluations in addition to running their own group. They also make the warranty that if you’re hacked, they look after it totally free.
I personally have actually never been hacked on my primary/ or secondary websites (knock on wood), however have assisted customers who have been. It’s frustrating, tiresome & an usually pricey scenario (even if you are using a service like Sucuri). Having an expert security group look after your WordPress install is a big pro in my book. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not cheap. Their Startup strategy is $35/mo and includes a single install and only up to 25,000 visits monthly.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, trustworthy VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the exact same cost from InMotion. And if you are simply starting out with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting plan from Bluehost for simply a couple dollars monthly.
Both of which allow for more storage & more gos to (ie, essentially as numerous as you can manage) than WP Engine. I have actually run websites that have actually had 60k check outs monthly on a shared server. I’ve likewise run dozens of little WordPress sites off a low expense shared hosting.
But I’ll cover that pricing disadvantage in the cons of WP Engine, but here’s the thing.
For some site owners, if you break out WP Engine by overall worth & consider your very own (or your designer’s) time, their prices is amazing.
Just running WordPress updates on a monthly basis & QA’ing your setup can take around Thirty Minutes every month. If your (or your dev’s) services are billed at $50 (or more)/ hour, then that’s WP Engine’s whole month-to-month cost right there.
If you lose any gos to due to downtime from a bad plugin update, then that could be WP Engine’s whole regular monthly charge right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you don’t use a staging area) on your PHP code, and knock your site down … then that could be WP Engine’s whole monthly cost right there.
Losing visitors due to speed issues or downtime expenses lost income.
Additionally, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to point out any individual or designer time repairing problems.
Basically, if your time is much better allocated away from technical problems, then WP Engine makes a lot of sense on value. As a managed WordPress hosting service, that’s really their thing. Hosting services are an investment instead of a cost.
Which sort of value-based pricing segues into another pro for WP Engine, their focus on their core markets. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
Like I said at the start, WP Engine isn’t really for everyone. There are 3 kinds of consumers that WP Engine seems to be a suitable for. For those 3 kinds of consumers, WP Engine has a strong focus with a lot of tools & focus for each.
From their backend process, the first customer type seems to be WordPress developers and designers who want to focus on advancement & style without handling hosting maintenance, and have clients who have some budget plan. The designer/dev builds the site straight in WP Engine’s staging environment, launches the site, then hands the website over to their customer.
The designer can assure their client that WP Engine handles the hosting, security & speed. There’s little requirement for an ongoing standard website upkeep. For this market, WP Engine has interesting tools consisting of staging, git push, website migration and transferable installs.
The second consumer type is the growing website owner who is annoyed at needing to handle technical development headaches. They’ve outgrown their shared hosting and have to relocate to a much better host.
They’re likewise established enough that they have some spending plan for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & client support to make that procedure take place. The phone support is a crucial aspect, specifically being able to “just call WP Engine an have them repair it.”
The third client type is a startup website owner that has the budget and desires a long-lasting platform that they can grow with. They are comfy learning WP Engine’s special backend and plan on introducing a near-complete site simultaneously.
They do not have any previous routines or custom-mades brought over from previous hosts or websites. Again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable functions, customers, and support that they can make guarantees and supply support to win & keep this type of consumer.
With these kinds of customers, WP Engine knows how & where they are coming from, a lot of of the enhancements they make are concentrated on these markets (ie, the Git push functionality), rather than mass-market enhancements like knowledge-bases, intuitive backend, and so on.
This benefit is similar to WP Engine’s market focus, however it’s really worth calling out in this review revision. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
WP Engine stands out not just on present functions however likewise on developing new, innovative hosting functions. Every variation of WordPress 4 has actually rolled out new developer features that WP Engine has been able to incorporate.
Even general web development finest practices have actually changed significantly since I started observing the industry *. WP Engine has actually produced tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ marketer by trade. I understand adequate web advancement to integrate best practices into implementation & tasks with developers.
Here’s a screenshot of WP Engine’s Git Push setup that has actually been around for more than 2 years.
Even for non-developers like me, WP Engine has one-click staging areas to allow even DIY siteowners to get away from “cowboy coding” into proper web development best practices.
There are too many other specifics here to name, but in general, WP Engine has a strength in rolling out new, useful hosting features.
Cons of WP Engine
Just like any service, WP Engine is not the very best suitable for everybody. There are plenty of WP Engine complaints around the Internet. Some are anecdotal. Some are embellishment (ie, SEOs complaining about dev sites). And lots of are valid because they merely aren’t a fit for everybody. For all their awesomeness in some locations, they have some cons which keep them from being a good fit for some customers. I don’t use them for this site due to the fact that I do not require much of their functions and I’m comfortable “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
All that said, here are a few of the larger picture downsides of utilizing WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To attain the speed, security, and scale they guarantee, WP Engine does things differently. Which distinction can be quite complicated– especially if you have simply adequate experience with hosting environments to be harmful.
Their backend setup has gotten better. It’s cleaner, however it’s still custom-made. It’s nothing like a conventional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike many hosting business, they likewise do not offer DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions exist, the special backend can result in some developers making mistakes varying from frustrating redirect loops to duplicate content issues to leaving the dev website available to the public or just not allowing the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for amazing support, I believe they ‘d lose more beginner customers than they already do.
Like lots of custom platforms, it makes sense once you overcome the knowing curve. However WP Engine’s onboarding is very developer-focused & stays so exception-focused that they never discuss finest practice for the general user. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
Here is their video on pushing your site live –
I’ve set up my share of sites from platforms to custom hosts to cPanel hosting websites, however I had to view that video multiple times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the ideal IP address.
Again, if you are in WP Engine’s core markets, the custom-made backend isn’t going to be a substantial offer (once you get past the knowing curve). But for most, you’ll likely get to find out very first hand about WP Engine’s support team.
But here’s the important things.
WP Engine never really stops being quirky and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a variety of website checklists to assist fix all sorts of concerns.
And ” if you did not setup your DNS exactly how they’ve recommended ” your site could go down at any time.
Again– they have reasons why they do all this. And in most cases, support will simply look after all of it.
But, you still don’t get to set & forget your website. Sure, you don’t technically don’t need to enter into the weeds of a server panel. In lots of hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you don’t need to do it anyway, and when you do, the knobs and buttons recognize. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
WP Engine’s exclusive setup cuts both methods regards to reducing & increasing complexity.
This con is also connected to WP Engine’s unique setup. In order to run their architecture along with possible, all the installs on their platform have to be rather consistent.
They have to have predictable plugins; predictable visitor patterns; foreseeable usage cases. Every hosting business has rules (or extremely genuine physical limitations), but WP Engine goes a bit more to specify what you can and can’t have on your WordPress install in addition to tiered overage prices to discourage seasonal traffic spikes and local storage use.
They do ban particular plugins & admin habits for good factors, but those bans restrict adaptability and experimentation if your site could handle it.
For instance, Yet Another Associated Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource intensive, but on smaller sized websites, it gets the job done well. It’s not allowed on WP Engine. That’s not good or bad always. But it does make WP Engine less versatile and open to experimentation compared with running a shared or VPS server.
The way their rates is structured permits less adaptability too. It’s a positive that they will deal with all the traffic you can send out, but it’s also expensive to pay based on a variety of gos to.
If you are running a big launch; are a seasonal business; or simply wish to drive a rise of traffic to your site, you’ll have to factor extra hosting bills into the mix. That puts a cap on how flexible you want to be with your marketing.
If you are running a lean cached website on a VPS server, you can manage a lot more traffic than WP Engine would permit on a Personal or Service. And this point goes even more if your website needs lots of plugins for full performance.
The very same opts for storage. With WP Engine, you are paying for performance, not for storage. So if you are looking to utilize a server for media storage … that utilize case is out.
Furthermore, you cannot really do automated e-mail marketing projects from WP Engine. This was something that my customer got called for & ended up having to do an agonizing migration to another email company mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their prices based on features.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are typically paying for performance & not needing to believe too much about upkeep, security & speed. If you look at WP Engine’s pricing based upon the features you’re getting, you truly do not get a whole lot.
And if you are the type who will consider your website’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress upgraded and normally logging in frequently), you’ll likely be spending for “management” that is superfluous. Wp Engine Pci Compliance
Numerous shared hosting servers can deal with the very same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a fraction of the cost. My individual site (operating on a shared hosting strategy from HostGator with standard caching) dealt with more than 15,000 check outs in a 24 Hr period when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a reputable VPS, you can certainly manage a lot more for much less.
They are fairly transparent about how they count check outs, but it can still be rather a surprise for “little” website owners how quickly they can enter the $290 each month tier.
And as pointed out previously that doesn’t even include a lot of the functions you don’t get with WP Engine’s plans. You can’t run any email from your servers. You have low limits on local storage. Anything above the limits needs additional expenses & technical execution of Amazon cloud services.
And most notably for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a couple of side tasks or low-traffic test sites, you have to factor those into the cost. You can’t utilize them to spread out the cost of your plan,specifically if you are hitting your visitor cap rather than your set up cap.
If you are seeking to spend for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & provide your site files, WP Engine is an expensive option, especially compared with other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about exactly what is finest total, however what is finest for you based on your goals, budget plan, resources & practices.
If you are in what I consider WP Engine’s core markets, they provide a great service with a solid product. Their prices is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting area, and they offer more features than “WordPress hosting” strategies from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unrivaled for smart DIYers, WordPress site designers and/or high-traffic sites that do not wish to fret about hosting concerns.
If handled hosting is a suitable for you, then go have a look at WP Engine’s strategies here.
They do a 60-day money-back assurance. So do a test install and see exactly what you think of their backend. Make sure to talk w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your existing host & want more liberty/ better costs than WP Engine, take a look at InMotion Hosting’s VPS alternative. I’ve appreciated their balance of user-friendly backend & responsive customer service.
And lastly, if you are more baffled than ever, go take my WordPress hosting test. I put all these aspects into an enjoyable, Buzzfeed-esque quiz to simplify things. Wp Engine Pci Compliance